Yoghurt Sauce

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Easy

Appears in

Floyd on Fish

By Keith Floyd

Published 1985

  • About

Ingredients

  • ½ pint (300 ml) plain natural yoghurt (free range if possible)
  • 3 tablespoons peeled and finely chopped cucumber
  • 1 tablespoon chives, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon concentrated mint sauce
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • Salt and pepper

Method

Mix together and chill.

In the days of coaching inns British sauces were a thing to be reckoned with. There was a time when Cumberland and Somersetshire sauce, to name but two, were beautifully prepared regional garnishes to tickle the palate of the dusty traveller. Then suddenly they invented lorries and factories and our gastronomic heritage was unceremoniously dumped into bottles and distributed, rich with stabilisers and colouring, from the central depot. The Americans, quick to exploit our weakness, dived in with ketchups and relishes. The unscrupulous continentals swiftly followed up with confections related only by name to the original recipes once they realised we eat with our eyes. British cooking had hit rock bottom. Even the great gravy had been sabotaged by boxes of powder and jars of black liquid.

My mum stuck out and still makes her gravy (the French call it jus de rôti) with the dripping from the meat and the water the vegetables were cooked in, thank goodness. But I digress.

Then came the colour supplements and Egon Ronay and nouvelle cuisine and suddenly we’re all into sauce cooking again. Regrettably this often means pouring a gallon or two of cream over an otherwise perfectly good piece of fish or meat. It’s significant that the French call vinaigrette a sauce, or even just two tablespoons of the roasting juices of a joint a sauce, and it’s not poured over to disguise the taste of anything – it’s to complement the flavours.

So please read my sauce recipes carefully - better a squeeze of lemon over a fillet of fish than a bucket of badly conceived liquid from a jar, no matter how grand the name. And don’t swamp the food. Just a little goes a long way. Thank you.